Coffee pod drinks are a convenient but expensive habit. Getting your caffeine fix this way easily costs triple the price of regular home drip. Startup company Capsulier, though, envisions a new way to game the pod racket. Its $299 (converts to about £210, AU$370) Revo capsule maker fills reusable Nespresso-style pods with whole bean coffee that it grinds itself.
There are clear potential upsides to this approach: The first would be reduced cost, since whole beans are comparatively cheaper than pods. Nespresso capsules cost about 70 cents per drink while my home drip works out to 23 cents a cup. The second advantage would be better-tasting coffee since it would be brewed from fresh grounds. Ground coffee in pods can sit around for months before being consumed.
The concept of the Capsulier Revo is simple. You supply the machine with your favorite coffee beans. It will grind them and prepare coffee capsules on demand. These pods, called Capsi, are constructed from stainless steel and designed for repeated use. The Revo device will come with a set of four Capsi capsules. The company says it plans to sell Capsi modules separately too.
The appliance itself can hold up to eight empty Capsi capsules. You choose how many pods you'd like the machine to prep at once. It can make anywhere from just one capsule to batch processing up to its full load of eight.
The current Revo appliance packages capsules for Nespresso coffee pod brewers. The company is also working on another version of the product that's compatible with Keurig products, specifically the K-cup format.
Supposedly the Revo will come with smart capabilities too. Through a companion mobile app you'll be able to command capsule creation right from your phone. Additionally, the company plans for the app to support Amazon's Alexa voice assistant.
If you're intrigued by the Capsulier Revo you're in for a wait. Right now the product exists as a Kickstarter project only. The project isn't fully funded yet either. Feb. 14, Valentine's Day, is the official funding deadline. If all goes well and backers show the Revo some love, the $299 machine should ship globally by October 2017.
Kickstarter backers can preorder the Capsulier for an early bird discount of $179. Of course the offer is good only while supplies last. Before you jump on board though, consider this caveat first. As with any crowdfunded project, there's no guarantee the Capsulier will ever become a real product. CNET's reporting on crowdfunding campaigns is not an endorsement of the project or its creators. Before contributing to any campaign, read the crowdfunding site's policies -- in this case, Kickstarter -- to find out your rights (and refund policies, or the lack thereof) before and after a campaign ends. My rule of thumb is to consider any cash you pledge an outright donation or at best a risky gamble with long odds.